Sepphoris In Galilee

by David Padfield

Sepphoris in Galilee (Zipporis)


Sepphoris, also known as Zipporis, is the traditional birthplace of Mary and is located in the center of Galilee. The area is surrounded with olive groves, pomegranates, grape vines, and fig trees—items often mentioned on the pages of the Bible.

"The village is identified with the Second Temple-period Cana of John 2. Here Jesus reluctantly performed His first miracle of turning water to wine at a wedding feast, and thus emerged from His 'hidden years' to begin His three-year ministry in the Galilee." (Fodor's Israel, p. 260).

Though our Lord's hometown, Nazareth, is located just four miles to the south, Sepphoris is never mentioned in the New Testament.

A theater which seated around 4500 people (see photo above) has been dated to the first century. In the second century Sepphoris became a center of rabbinic learning, and it was here that Rabbi Judah the Prince codified the Mishnah.